Happy New Year young world. I hope all is well and you brought in this year in a safe yet joyous and festive way. As I gear up to improve on the headway made in the year prior, I always like to take the time to reflect on how the year was. I start by looking at myself, then move on to my loved ones, then on to general life, then normally finishing with some standouts for the year for me. I like to think about the athletes and franchises, artists, actors, designers, and other personalities that all had a break out year. Names that come to mind immediately are Dave Chappelle, DJ Khaled, Issa Rae, Russell Westbrook, Jordan Peele, Cardi B, Giannis Antetokounmpo, and a slew of other folks as well. However there is one name that has become extremely relevant due to the year they had, and it’s Joe Budden.
Now as soon as some of you read that name you immediately had a reaction. For some it was a reluctant “You’re right”, for some it was “My guy is finally getting his credit”, and honestly for some it was disdain. None of those feelings are a bad thing in this case, nor are they a bad thing for Joe. If we are being honest you really have to admire Joe remaining relevant in arguably one of the most fickle industries in entertainment. I really want us all to think about it, Joe’s career has spanned nearly twenty years. Please digest that. A twenty year career from an artist that has never had a platinum selling album. NOW that is far from a shot at JOE. He is an extremely talented artist and a pioneer in certain aspects of music, but there are some people that aren’t in the know that would consider him a one hit wonder. So you ask how could this man have arguably one of the greatest years of anyone in 2017?
To take things in chronological order we have to speak on his work with Complex. In early 2017 Joe parlayed being flamboyantly opinionated into having one of the most popular new series of 2017. Everyday Struggle was an instant success for Complex. It touched a lot of topics that go on in the music and entertainment industry from a fully transparent stance. The series immediately showed itself as brash, unfiltered, genuine, and unapologetic; which was refreshing to say the least. Beyond the content and segments one thing was prevalent from Joe with the series. Complex needed to deliver the bag, and checks needed to be cut. Now unfortunately for us due to those very reasons Joe and Complex parted ways at the end of 2017. This is something we can’t fault Joe for either. He had a product he felt was worth a certain value, and on top of that it showed it was. At that point he needed to do what was best for him.
Beyond the success within his career in 2017, Joe had great success with his love life. Joe and Cyn Santana were honestly one of the more surprising relationships of 2016. 2017 showed that their love was not only pure and genuine, it was actually infectious to boot. Being candid with you, we actually saw a different type of aura from Joe. His entire being seemed to be in a much better space, and this was a dope thing to see with him. All this love led to Joe conceiving his second child who was born in early December. Welcoming life is always a great experience and Joe has seemed to bask in it honestly. And as Cyn and Joe allowed the world to glimpse into their relationship, the world ate it up. Seeing their love, their growth, the joys they shared through pregnancy and birth, were all moments people flocked to in 2017.
Joe iced this year literally in the final hour. After his departure from Everyday Struggle there were a lot of rumors of where he would land and what he would end up in next. Mind you he has had successful stents in radio, TV, with his podcasts, and with his web series. There were a multitude of directions he could have taken for his latest endeavor. He and Charlamagne hosted a year end recap special which also added to a lot of speculation on potential options. But, it was an Instagram post from Diddy that would lead us to the next move. The two two-stepped around the pool prior to Diddy’s huge New Years Eve celebration, which seemed to be like a calm before a storm. Later that night we found out that Joe would be moving on to Revolt partnering for a very lucrative venture. At this point I ask, what better way to end a year? This was a crowning moment. Diddy seldomly makes a bad investment, and that’s exactly what this move with Joe is. It looks to be something that will be beneficial for both parties and we are truly looking forward to how it plays out.
So now that it’s all in perspective, can you really name anyone with a better year than Joe? Through the controversy and the headlines he has catapulted himself back into a prominent place in the industry. Only time will tell how everything plays out this year, but if it’s anywhere near what last year was for him, it should definitely be impressive.